DIA stands for Desarollo Integral para Adolescentes and was established by Solid to offer a solution to the problems of many teenage girls in Ayacucho. DIA has implemented three projects and is planning a fourth:
- An intensive assistance program for teenage mothers
- Crisis shelter
- An employment project for teenage mothers
- A independent accompanied living project
For more information on the establishment of DIA, please click here.
Projects in progress
1. Assistance program for teenage mothers
In spite of the high percentage of teenage pregnancies, there is no organization in Ayacucho that aims its aid specifically on the guidance of young mothers in high risk situations. However, intervention at a young age can prevent behavioural and health problems at a higher age. The assistance program that DIA has implemented is based on the American Nurse Family Partnership and consists of an intensive scheme of home visits by trained nurses. The home visits start at 4 months pregnancy and last until the child is 2 years old. The program has three specific targets: improving the course of the pregnancy, ameliorating the development and health of the child and stimulating the personal development of the mother and her opportunities for education and work. All of this to give mother and child better prospects.
2. Crisis shelter
In Ayacucho there is no temporary crisis shelter program for girls who become victim of violence or young mothers in high risk situations. It happens that parents kick their daughter out on the streets if they find out she is pregnant. It is very important to offer help to these girls to prevent escalation of their problems. DIA has established a crisis shelter for girls that are threatened in their safety or integrity and cannot go home temporarily or permanently. A close collaboration with the public prosecutor and the juvenile judge is necessary. Depending on the situation of the girl, appropriate follow-up care must be soughed.
Obviously this social approach only has a structural result if we also fulfill an economic need. It is of vital importance that the girls gain access to dignified work that offers them the possibility to further develop their personality, so that they have a chance at a better job in the future. DIA actively mediates in the employment of the girls and attempts to establish micro companies, where part-time jobs for the girls are created, so that they get the opportunity to develop their potential.
The first micro enterprise was set-up in 2010 and concerns a small-scale catering company. A number of girls are trained in preparing typical local meals and snacks which are sold on seminars, workshops or other activities of local firms or agencies. For the moment Solid Peru is their principal client but they will soon take the next step and expand their clientele.
The second employment project consists of the start-up of a small-scale traditional needlework workshop. Many of the girls are very skilled in embroidering, crocheting, knitting etc. and with proper guidance and organization DIA will supply high quality products that can be sold in Belgium. For the needlework project DIA works together with organizations LN Beanies, AS Adventure, Bever and Cotswold. In addition, a collaboration with Ducksday is on the table.
- LN Beanies; a young, Belgian, promising brand of handmade beanies and scarves. For more information, you can visit the website: www.lnbeanies.com. In March 2012 we started the production of the first collection: LN Andes.
- AS Adventure: “the place to be” for every globetrotter, nature lover and active pleasure-lover. A couple of years ago, AS Adventure launched the Ayacucho collection of which a part of the earnings go to Solid International. Since recently, the teenage mothers of DIA are also making beanies for the Ayacucho collection.
- Bever: As the Dutch counterpart of AS Adventure, Bever is THE specialist for everyone who wants to actively enjoy the fresh air. Since last year, Bever also sells the Ayacucho collection of which a part of the profit goes to Solid International. Our teenage girls are currently producing beanies for Bever as well.
- Cotswold: As the British counterpart of AS Adventure, Cotswold Outdoor started life in 1974 as Cotswold Camping, selling a range of basic camping accessories from a small outbuilding in the Cotswolds. Nearly 40 years later, the company is an award winning multi-channel retailer with over 65 thriving stores in the UK and more to come.
- Ducksday: a new Belgian brand that introduced, at the request of lots of mums, funky functional rain gear for toddlers and children. "It is Ducksday’s mission to design and provide high quality versatile outdoor clothing at an affordable price with a maximum of fun and style: for kids on the move." For the moment the teenage mothers of DIA are making samples of beanies and scarves for kids to be sold by Ducksday.
1. Independent accompanied living
For girls or young mothers that can’t go home but have a certain degree of emotional maturity, DIA will start up a project of accompanied living. The objective of this project is to accompany the girls in living independently and to promote their self-help so that they can live on their own on term. The girls have to foresee in their own support and the rooms will be offered at a reduced rate.